Bunking at the Lincklaen House in Cazenovia

There are no covered bridges in Madison County but what you will find will capture your heart just as strong. This week I’m working in the Heartland of New York, the beautifully bucolic surroundings of Central New York

Think farm-to-table, local craft breweries, antique shops, heritage sites and historic bed-and-breakfast lodgings. I’m also staying in a town voted “the coolest small town in America” by Budget Travel magazine: Cazenovia.

Unfortunately, there’s very little time for exploration and, believe me, it’s killing me not to hike! Every morning, I drive past a street sign on Route 20 for the Stone Quarry Hill Art Park, recognized as #2 in National Geographic’s “Top Ten Sculpture Parks and Trails.” Someday, I’ll find time to stop and see what all the fuss is about.

The free time I do have is spent bunking at a turn of the century landmark inn called The Lincklaen House. This elegant hotel was built just over 180 years ago and boasts renting rooms to prominent guests including former President and Mrs. Grover Cleveland and business magnate, John D. Rockefeller.

There is no elevator but who’s complaining? The modern convenience hadn’t yet been invented when the proprietors broke ground on this hotel in 1836.

Every evening, my hunger is satiated with a buttery homemade popover in the hotel’s cellar tap room, a cozy space aglow by a stone fireplace and a crowded mahogany bar. The menu includes small plates dressed with fresh organic ingredients (try the Lincklaen house chips) and rotating entrees of creative combinations.

Want to feel like a dignitary? It’s easy! Skip the Thruway and step back in time on Route 20, the original Albany Street, go 115 miles west and, voila! You’ll be enjoying the finely carved woodwork, charming amenities and moldings of this historic hotel too.

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